My LJ is friends-only apart from this public post, which is to tell you more about who I am and to invite you to fill in the poll below if you wish me to add you to my friends list. Generally, I only add people I've met and get on with or who are friends even if in some loose sense of the word, but will sometimes add people with whom I share interests.
43, hair colour varies please see userpic for most recent version*, bi etc.
I'm a writer of erotic fiction, some published in magazines under nickname 'Piglet' and some on website: Vacant, which also has other women's pervy writing.
I'm an SM-er, but far too fluffy in person for you to notice unless I told you.
I have a history of being poly but am currently being monogamous and am happy with how that's going.
You may have found me through a disability community. I have circulatory disease (probably raynaud's) and asthma, the former being the bane of my life and the latter being a bit annoying. Formerly agoraphobic, my map of places I've been is now quite large and includes a bit of the US.
Name: Trish Oak (like the tree)
Birthday: 4th November
Place of Birth: Here - the house got knocked down to build a ring road. I was born probably where the tallest tree behind the sign you can see just the back of is.
Marital Status: Recently married to theta_g
Occupation: Specialist Stop Smoking Advisor
Star sign: I don't believe in it
Hair : As near to my natural colour as I can get after years of dyeing it unnatural colours
Eyes : Grey with some interesting variation if you can be bothered to look close enough
Height : 159cm
Weight : Currently 75kg and doing Weight Watchers in attempt to reach 70kg. I started off at 80 so am halfway there.
Q: Do you have a nickname?
A: Piglet - no longer used by anyone I see regularly
Q: How long have you kept a weblog?
A: Since June 28th 2001
Q: Where do you live?
Q: But were you born there? If not, then where?
A: Already answered that
Q: Tell us about your family
A: Blood relatives? Both parents still alive and very much loved. I have one very precious and wonderful sister, 2 nephews and a niece who is awesome.
Q: Describe your looks?
A: I don't have conventional good looks and have had a struggle with accepting my face. That said, I have done.
Q: Tell us about your partner (or ideal partner if you haven't got one)?
A: He's a very quirky and geeky American guy. Most people who meet him take to him instantly. He makes me laugh, helps me be strong and is my best friend. I hope we're together for a long time.
Q: For a day out would you prefer, a theme park, a football game or spend the day in a bar?
A: Oh dear Lord, none of the above. The theme park would probably be the least annoying.
Q: What do you do for a job?
A: I think I already answered this one too. Whoever wrote this questionnaire may have some short term memory problems.
Q: Who would you sound like if I called you on the phone?
A: I sound 12 on the phone. I know because it's my own voice on the answer message at work and I hear it whenever I call in and all the phones are busy or nobody's there.
Q: Religion - do you do it? If so what?
A: I don't do religion because I don't believe in God or any equivalent. I am as spiritual as a packet of jaffa cakes and incapable of belief in deities.
Q: Politics - right, left or centre?
A: Reasonably far left
Q: Do you like it hot or cold?
Q: What book are you reading at the moment?
A: I'm currently reading 2 books - one is 'The Voyage of the Beagle' (Charles Darwin) and the other is "All Lies and Jest" by booklectic, which I urge you all to buy a copy of
Q: What was the last song on your Ipod?
A: I have music and pictures in my head and thus no need of feeding them in while I'm walking along
Q: Describe your music collection?
A: Mainly 70's prog rock - I blame my sister
Q: SPORT - Yes or no?
A: I'm massively uncoordinated and a bit short sighted so not good at sports. Love exercising though. Do I watch it? No, not really
Q: Do you have a website/homepage?
A: I have a site hosted by a friend which has written erotica on it
Q: Do you have a celebrity crush?
Q: Do you have a celebrity hate?
A: It's weird - kind of not really. We don't get to see these people for their real selves; their lives are sold to us like a product and much of it is just made up.
Q: Beer or wine?
A: Neither, I'm teetotal
Q: Home or abroad?
A: Both are cool
Q: Toothbrush - are you electric or manual?
Q: Type of the property you live in?
A: One-bedroom flat, decorated in primary colours
Q: What were your best subjects at school?
A: French, English, Maths - is what I did A levels in
Q: Spender or saver?
A: A mixture
Q: What newspaper do you buy?
A: I have been known to buy the Observer on a Sunday but more likely just to look online for news
Q: One of life's regrets is?
A: That I used to smoke. Is pretty much my only real regret.
Q: Coronation St or Eastenders?
Q: Do you like questionnaires?
A: Yes, I think they give one a fleeting sense of importance ;)
Q: Where do you buy your clothes?
A: Charity shops and Primani
Q: Cat, dog or goldfish?
Q: Rare, medium or well done?
A: I believe the question refers to steak, which isn't something I eat
Q: Do you drive?
A: I passed the test but only drove a few times since then and have long since lost my licence (as in mislaid). I think it's living in London
Q: Have you ever been in trouble with the law?
A: Not for very many years
Q: Is there an afterlife?
Q: Tell me something that scares you?
A: What this current UK government is doing to the NHS
Q: How would you describe your personality?
A: I'll leave that for others to do. I have some good points and some bad, like everyone.
Q: Tell us about some jobs you've had that you've loved?
A: My first thing I did for money was babysitting in a women's refuge, which rocked. I also liked the 8 or 9 years I was teaching. Kids are knackering though.
Q: Name some places you've lived?
A: Warmley, London, Essex - not so exotic really
Q: What kind of things do you enjoy on TV?
A: I prefer it turned off, to be honest. We have watched some 'Dirk Gently' recently and that was good.
How I use LJ
I was going to use the word 'policy' here but that sounds a bit too official and work-like; and I use LJ for fun. I use LJ to see what my friends are up to and to chat to them online at times when I wouldn't normally get to speak to them. I use LJ to talk to people who don't live in the same town or even the same country as me. I don't update every day but I update most days. I talk about my life, mostly, and about some other things.
Friends and filter groups
I have a lot of filter groups. Mostly these are so my friends can choose to opt in or out of reading me talk about certain subjects. I do SM (bdsm), for example, and so there's a filtered group for talking about that. Some of my filter groups are comprised of only one person - I find this useful as it can be quicker than email if I suspect that person is reading LJ.
I rarely defriend anyone. If one of my friends upsets me on LJ or in real life, then I'll try to sort it out away from LJ. If I don't want to read what they're writing for a while, then I'll either not look at my friends list or I'll take them off my Default view for a bit, until things are sorted out and I feel better. I think this has only ever happened once or twice and I can't even remember who the people concerned were. Needless to say, if someone's decided they want nothing to do with me in real life, I don't see the point of keeping them added as a friend on here.
In the past, if someone defriended me then I used to email them and ask if everything was ok between us. Then I asked them if they still wanted to be able to read my posts, or if they weren't bothered. Although I currently have at least one person on my friends list and me not on theirs because they want to keep the option open of re-friending me on LJ at a later time (and I've ascertained that I haven't pissed them off, which is good), now I just defriend someone right back when they take me off their friends list. Life's too busy and short to chase round after people.
Do I read everything my friends write on LJ?
No. I can't guarantee that I will always see what people have written. I usually look at my friends list each time I come onto LJ but not always. If I'm busy, then I skim read my friends page for anything that looks interesting/fun/like I should be reading it. When I have more time I will occasionally read the last day or so of what everyone has written.
Sometimes I also look at other people's friends pages and at their user pictures and at communities they belong to. I go into their memorable posts and have a look at them. This is when I have time and when I'm a bit bored.
Do I always comment?
If I don't make a comment to a post, that doesn't mean I haven't read what has been written. I tend to comment only where I have something to say.
Do I write down everything that happens to me?
Very definitely not. I can leave LJ alone for days at a time and come back without feeling any desire to update on all I've been doing. I choose what to put on my journal and what not to. If I go out somewhere then I might mention it or I might not. If I have a date with someone then ditto. That said, I will write things that some people might consider tedious and irrelevant from time to time. I am updating this post on Shrove Tuesday 2005, for example, and I just posted what fillings I put in my pancakes (editorial note: that was nearly 7 years ago now!!)
I try to use cut tags especially during the week; aware that many people are looking at LJ from work in snatched bits of time and don't want long posts taking up their friends pages. If it's the weekend I won't worry so much. Any explicit pictures also go under a cut tag, and anything that I'm not sure whether people will want to read, I'll warn them before the cut tag.
Arguing on LJ
Where people are having a disagreement on LJ, I try not to join in. I'll try to be supportive where my friends need support but I'll also aim not to have a go at anyone. I'm not saying that, where there's conflict, I don't have opinions - just that I don't wish to throw in my instant opinion into such a public sphere; I don't see how it is helpful to those arguing and I don't like LJ used as a place for arguing of the kind that gets bitchy and personal. Often I don't have an instant opinion to throw in. I need time to think things through and hear different people's voices and even then there are instances where I can't 'take a side'. Sorry to sound like such a hippy.
If I have a problem with someone else and I want to talk about that problem, I may use a filter group of a very small number of my LJ friends to talk about it and help me towards a solution. This does not happen very often. Where things are very difficult/sensitive, I'll use a filter group of people I mostly know only through LJ to talk the problem through, and I may change names of people concerned.
That's it for the moment. I may update this as and when and if I think of anything else.
Disclaimer: - This is about how I use LJ, not necessarily how I think YOU should use LJ.
P.S. Attention would-be anonymous posters! I've had to disable anonymous posting because I was getting spammed.